Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Retirement. It’s the alluring white light at the end of the tunnel that we move toward, eyes focused on what we hope is paradise at the end. If retirement is the reward we are focused on, then what are we truly missing before retirement?
Your exciting, passionate life that you can be living right now at this very moment. The life that you are saving like a set of guest towels or fine china, packed away ever so neatly for just the right time. The life that you talk to your financial planner about and save for every day. The life that you say, “Oh I can’t do that now, I have to wait.”
Why are we so hesitant to truly live the lives we want to live and feel the need to wait?
The answer is simple; fear. Fear of change, fear of money, fear of what people will think or say. Fear of living wildly and passionately by doing what you want to do every day instead waiting patiently for that magical retirement number to roll around.
Here’s your WAKE UP CALL to living your life right now! Living and doing that which adds passion and value to your life.
First let’s find your passion. What excites you, gives you that spark, that fire and allows you to view this retirement thing in a whole new light?
For me it was owning my own business as a massage therapist and living on a farm. Two separate dreams that merged into a life that I find exciting and passionate. To add to the exciting adventure I call my life, I am happy to say that now I’ve added my love for writing.
Anything is possible if you open your mind and listen to your heart’s desire.
Danielle LaPorte has the best empowering video for fueling your passion and getting your mojo started:
Second is the BIG money question;“I have bills to pay and I need to make so much money to survive.”
I thought the same thing before I quit my corporate job to pursue my massage therapy business. The surprising thing I found was I could live on much less. I was astonished by the fact that I was making less money (and uncertain money ~ remember starting a business) and eliminated more debt while still paying my household and business bills.(In full disclosure here I have to add that I have made my share of money mistakes but I still came out ahead.)
What’s the money secret? First it’s not a secret; I knew that I HAD to master the money thing for it to work. I was determined not to let money be the barrier between doing a job I love while living my exciting life all before retirement.
Later on I discovered the envelope system through Dave Ramsey and as simple as it sounds it works. “You have to tell your money where to go,” Dave says and it’s true. Once you give your money direction you will be amazed at the results.
What is the envelope system? It is a simple method of having envelopes set up for your cash expenses and filling them with the money allotted each week from your budget. This is the same “system” that your grandparents and parents used and it still works today.
The third thing that may be putting your exciting life on hold is; “I like having nice stuff.”
Let’s separate the “I like nice stuff” from the stuff you may truly need. What will you do when the fridge dies or the water heater breaks?
Let me bring you back to the envelope system. It works every time and cash helps you break the “plastic habit.” Also spending cash keeps you very honest with your purchases and gives you leverage when making those purchases. Cash talks!
And the final question is “I can’t leave my job because….”
You are the sole support of your family or you may feel you have too much time invested in your job to pursue another. All of these are valid reasons. But making time for a life that you are passionate and excited about before you retire is very a valid reason also.
Rearranging your work schedule or working part time might allow you to enjoy something you have been putting off until retirement time rolls around. Who knows you may find a new career path that gives you the excitement and pleasure you desire and deserve right now.
Be bold enough to invent your own retirement life instead of modeling what the rest of the world does. Find your passion, pay off your debt and start living your life in this moment! Don’t let that magical retirement number dictate how you live your life.
Let me know what your plans are for living a passionate and fulfilling life before retirement. I love hearing your comments.
*For my Zen Chick Community members check out my new website design by clicking on the link in your email. Let me hear your feedback and thanks so much for your support.
photo credit: IronRodArt – Royce Bair (NightScapes on Thursdays) via photo pin cc